In September I got a new job. And of course, with everything new, you need some time to adjust and acclimate yourself to new working environment. Furthermore, it is even more important to prove yourself that you are up for that position.
So from September to January 2018, I was working full-time, without any days off (except for the holidays). Which of course truly gets to you. In December I was already running on empty, I was fed up with everything… same streets, same faces. So in December I was already with my head to go somewhere and take a little getaway from all of it – work, people and same old daily routine. Only problem was – I didn’t know where.
“On the road again…”
My little adventure started in the beginning of the year 2018. On the new years eve, I said to myself – »Fuck it! Let’s go.« Since it was on short notice, I decided to go somewhere close. So Austria it was, more precisely Linz. This is where my main »base« will be. I went to Booking.com, found a very nice hotel in the center of the city, booked it and the next day I was on my way.
I packed my bag, sat in a car and went for a 4 hour drive. For some people, driving can be stressful, but for me, sitting in my car, good music and nothing but open road ahead of you is truly therapeutic. I could already feel all those negative thoughts and burden behind me, as I drove on autobahn heading toward my destination.
Through Slovenia I had a nice weather and calm road, but just after I passed city of Graz, did austrian storm truly hit my windshields. It was foggy and pouring icy snow, and where you normally drive 130km/h, I ended up driving 80km/h. But nevertheless, driving safety, behind locals (that was already familiar with the road), I arrived in Linz.
“Linz – cozy little town”
I was surprised how quickly and without any complications did I arrived to my hotel. Maybe I was expecting the same complicated streets and der Stau (traffic jam) that you face on daily basis in Vienna. But just in few minutes after I got off the autobahn, I was already at my hotel, parked my car in the garage, took my bag and went to reception.
Star Inn Hotel Linz Promenadengalerien, 3 stars hotel, located in Steingasse 6, 4020 Linz, was very accommodating. Staff was truly polite and every time I went out and came back inside I was politely greeted and with smile. The day before I had a problem with my credit card, but staff was quickly very assuring that the room will be at disposal for me (also I was pleasantly surprised that they communicated with me in my language). I was placed on top floor (4th), but the view was not the best. Nevertheless, room was very nice. Big king-size bed, flat screen TV, free WiFi, coffee machine and two free coffee capsules (for more you have to pay). Room also had a small fridge, bathroom, and a safe box. Considering the location, fact they offer parking place (which is 16 EUR a day), room and polite staff, I highly recommend it.
After unpacking and short rest, I’ve decided to go out and take a little tour through the city. Weather was not good. Unfortunately later I found out, that for those couple of days I’ll be in Austria, they declared big storm in that part of Austria. But hey… that’s what happens on trips – unpredictable events, so you just take the best of it and think to yourself: “Well, it’s still a story.”
Although city of Linz is very small, it is still very beautiful and plenty to see and do. Just few meters after I stepped out of the hotel, I was already in the center of the town. Streets were still covered in Christmas spirit, and all was decorated with style. On the main square of the town, there weren’t many people out (probably because of the bad weather). But I’ve notice a small bridge that leads you on the other part of the town. While walking across the magnificent Danube river, the Austrian wind truly hit me.
On the other side of the town, there wasn’t much to see. Except for an old Townhouse and a Linz’s “electro house” – Ars Electronica. I explored that part of the town for a little bit and then returned back to hotel as it was fairly cold.
Later that evening , I met with a friend of mine from Linz. She took me to this nice bar called Walker on the main square of Linz. There I had myself a nice cold beer. I gotta say, Austrian beer are really good. Smooth, and not bitter. Truly easy to drink. And price of a beer wasn’t so expensive as I thought.
While I was walking around the town at night, I must say that at no point did I feel unsafe or uncomfortable. And seeing Linz at night is truly worth it. Some of the streets were beautiful mostly because of the Christmas lights, but this Ars Electornica across the bridge, is truly amazing and mesmerizing.
“Requeim for Mozart”
The next day, I woke up around 8:00h. With the friend of mine I decided to visit Salzburg. She already had planned to go there, so I was just tagging along with her. I wanted to go with my car, but I decided to take a train.
Now there is one thing you need to know about railroads in Austria. They have too major train companies – ÖBB and WestBahn. ÖBB is like a national railroad, which covers entire Austria. WestBahn is private company and it is covering upper Austria (Öberossteriech), and because of that it is more cheaper to take if you are traveling through upper Austrian cities such as Linz, Salzburg or Vienna. A two-way ticket from Linz to Salzburg cost me around 34 EUR.
On the arrival at der Bahnhof in Salzburg, weather was once again against me. It was raining icy snow, and with a combination of a cold wind, I was walking pretty fast from building to building to catch some warmth. Luckily streets are narrow enough, so I was protected form cold snow and wind. While I was making my way toward narrow city streets, I did notice much more people that were doing some shopping (Mozartkugel), so it was quite crowded.
I managed to get myself under the old castle of Salzburg. Sadly by the time I got there it was already getting dark, and view was not the best. But I decided to explore a little bit more through the streets of Salzburg, until after few hours I decided to go back to train station and wait for my train back to Linz.
“Back in Linz”
On Friday, gods of weather, finally had some mercy on me, and gave dry and sunny weather. I took that opportunity to go on the nearby hill and get a better view of Linz itself.
It took me a good hour to walk up there, but the view was worth it. If you are ever fed up with a city air, people or cars, this is truly a nice place to get away from everything. You get some fresh air, recharge your batteries and enjoy the view in silence.
I also took an opportunity to further explore the city…
On the last day I took an opportunity to buy myself a Linzer Torte. For that purpose I went to Konditorei Jindrak Headquarters & Art Café, which makes original Linzer Torte. Store offers different sizes for different prices. You can also buy it for your loved ones, and they will wrap it up for you nicely. Lady at the store was quite nice and told me that cake can last up to few weeks in fridge. Now usually I don’t like cakes nor am I a food expert, but this should be tried by anyone who comes to visit Linz.
“Until next time Austria…”
Maybe many of you might think, Linz is not worth the visit when you are on vacation, but the city is quite beautiful and peaceful. If you want a nice, getaway from your daily routine and you haven’t planned anything special, Linz is a great destination to satisfy your wanderlust and desire to have a calm rest.
Austria always had a certain charm and beauty in it. Either you are visiting cities or visiting the Austrian nature, she will always find a way to leave you awing and breathtaking. I will certainly visit her again… and again… auf Wiedersehen liebes Österreich.
1. if you are traveling on the upper part of Austria via train, I highly recommend WestBahn railroads.
2. Try Linzer Torte. You can get in most of the stores, but Konditorei Jindrak Headquarters & Art Café is always highly recommended.